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T Nguyen-Dang

NGUYEN DANG Thang obtained a BA in International Relations from the Institute for International Relations (now the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam), Hanoi in 1999 and an LLM in Public International Law from the School of Law of the University of Nottingham in 2006. Between 2000-2008, he worked as a legal expert inthe International Law and Treaty Department of the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs andin that capacity attended various international, regional and bilateral negotiations and conferences. Besides legal practice, he was also a visiting lecturer of the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam and co-convened a course on "Treaty Law and Practice". Heis currently a PhD candidate in the Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge and a member of Queens' College, Cambridge. In 2009-10 and 2010-11 respectively Thang served in the Editorial Boardas Editor and Managing Editorof the Cambridge Student Law Review - a student-run law journal. Mr Nguyen Dang is also an associate of the Centre for South China Sea Studies, Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam. He can be contacted at

  1. On June 21, 2012, at its 3rd Session, the 13th National Assembly of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam adopted the Law of the Sea of Vietnam. The Law, which comprises 7 chapters and 55 articles, is to transform the relevant provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea ("UNCLOS") that Vietnam ratified in 1994. The process of developing the Law of the Sea of Vietnam commenced in 1998 and various drafts were deliberated at the previous three tenures of the National Assembly 10, 11 and 12. The Law elaborates the principles and policies for the management and protection of the sea areas and islands of Vietnam. In particular, it reaffirms Vietnam's sovereignty over its offshore islands and archipelagos in the South China Sea, defines the scope and legal status of activities within different maritime zones of Vietnam under UNCLOS, establishes a domestic legal framework for search and rescue operations at sea, the exploitation of marine natural resources and the protection of the marine environment as well as lays the foundation for international cooperation in ocean affairs. According to Article 54, this Law will take effect on January 1, 2013. There will also be detailed regulations and guidance from the Government towards the implementation of the relevant provisions of the Law.
  2. During his official visit to EU, the Vietnamese Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton signed the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement ("PCA") between Vietnam and the EU at the latter's headquarters in Brussels on June 27, 2012. The signing of the PCA was described as an important development, taking the bilateral relationship to a new stage with wider and deeper cooperation on the basis of equality, mutual benefit and in line with the two sides' priorities on socio-economic development and external affairs. The PCA is believed to open up opportunities for cooperation between Vietnam and the EU in areas such as science and technology, education and training, agro-forestry and fisheries, natural disaster prevention and mitigation. It also testifies both sides' determination to further enhance their cooperation in addressing global issues such as non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, fighting terrorism and organized crimes and climate change. It is also expected that the PCA will be supplemented by an ambitious Vietnam-EU Free Trade Agreement. The negotiation of the latter was officially launched in Hanoi on October 8, 2012. The new PCA is needed to be ratified by EU Member States and should be submitted to the European Parliament before formally entering into force.
  3. Mr. Thang Nguyen-Dang (DPhil candidate, Queen's College, Cambridge)